Platitude - Poem by gershon hepner
Amorphous is the clarity
with which you see yourself;
these words have a disparity,
more worthy of a shelf
than of the poems I’ve collected
that demonstrate what I’ve inspected
in many polities,
in London and New York, and Roch-
ester, in Minnesota,
and Hershey, going up a notch,
and LA, where your motor
keeps running, even when you trip.
I don’t call this amorphous,
and would not change you like the hip
they changed, I think with more fuss
than I make over you each day;
I don’t take you for granted,
but fail appropriately to say
how much I am enchanted.
by you. Faith, hope and charity
are what St. Paul demanded;
you show all three with clarity
to me, so I’ll be candid.
Although you feel amorphous, you’re
the only one for me;
good wife’s a platitude, for sure,
that you turn out to be,
not like the good wife in the show
whose husband was so rotten.
You’re not a lawyer and you know
bad things should be forgotten,
and won’t assume, I hope, in rhyme
a dreadful attitude
although I’ve told you––just this time! ––
that you’re a platitude.
Inspired by a poem Linda wrote to me an hour ago and “The Good Wife” a CBS show in which Julianna Margulies plays the role of the good wife an Chris Noth plays the role of the rotten husband.
Who am I?
Amorphous clarity is what I see
surveying myself from here inside my skull.
My edges blend into the world about me
yet others find my outlines far from dull.
Sometimes I’m bright, sometimes dark as mud
dug from the streamside, squeezed, fingered like clay,
molded and dried, painted with grass and blood,
doused in a spotlight dazzling out dismay.
What is there left when I’ve been scrutinized,
dissected, put together as a shape
cruelly immortalized, allegorized
analogy of woman to an ape.
Did Beatrice know herself? Marie-Therese
once Pablo had transformed her into curves?
Did Montezuma, seen by stout Cortez,
does Goethe’s Gretchen or are fruits preserves?
The women Arbus saw, did they
say that is me my dear, you got me right,
and Marilyn, art of herself, display
the contours hiding from us in plain sight?
Obituaries will not help me when
you stand and say she was a perfect wife
and mother, once a teacher, cook, and then
she never said a bad word in her life.
Who am I? Tell me now before I blow
my cover, let it be outside my frame,
immortalizer, let me, not you, know
the poem you can write me for my name.
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If You Forget Me
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I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You